Marsh keen for allrounder heaven for ODI World Cup
Mitch Marsh is hopeful Australia will field an allrounder dream team at this year's World Cup in India, believing it could become a major weapon for the side.
Australia's World Cup preparations will ramp up a notch in the three-match ODI series against India, starting in Mumbai on Friday.
The return to fitness of Marsh (ankle) and Glenn Maxwell (broken leg) means Australia have a plethora of allrounder options, with Cameron Green, Ashton Agar and Marcus Stoinis also in the squad.
All five are proven match-winners, and Marsh would love as many as possible to be squeezed into the matchday XI.
"The more allrounders, the better," Marsh told reporters in India on Thursday.
"For the balance of our team, having as many allrounders in here as we can is really important for the structure we line up with.
"England have guys batting at No.8 that are genuine batters.
"It gives you the ability to either set really big totals or chase big totals. You'll see that hopefully this series.
"And looking forward to the World Cup, just the way the cricket is played here in the white-ball format, you're going to have to chase big scores or make big scores to be able to defend them.
"So the more flexibility you can have with your batting line up and depth (is) going to be really important."
Marsh is still working his way back to full fitness from ankle surgery, and will be a batter only for the three-match ODI series in India.
"I'm probably a month away, three weeks away, from bowling in games," Marsh said.
"I'll build towards the IPL.
"We've got a lot of (bowling) options in our team at the moment and a lot of cricket to play this year.
"The reason I had that surgery was to prolong my career as an allrounder. I won't be rushing back."
The series will also mark the return of opener David Warner (concussion, elbow hairline fracture) from the injuries he suffered during the Test series.
If Maxwell plays, it will be his first international match since breaking his left leg in a freak party accident in November.
With regular skipper Pat Cummins at home with family following the death of his mother, Steve Smith will captain the side for the series.
Australia squad: Steve Smith (c), Sean Abbott, Ashton Agar, Alex Carey, Nathan Ellis, Cameron Green, Travis Head, Josh Inglis, Marnus Labuschagne, Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis, David Warner, Adam Zampa
India squad: Rohit Sharma (c), Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, Suryakumar Yadav, K L Rahul, Ishan Kishan, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Kuldeep Yadav, Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj, Umran Malik, Shardul Thakur, Axar Patel, Jaydev Unadkat